Psalms 46 begins and finishes with two specific phrases:
‘God is our refuge and strength’ & ‘the God of Israel is our fortress’
Think about a fort or a castle – these structures are massive and formidable to an enemy, but comfort to a friend. In a fortress we can find supplies and safety.
But look at the second and second last phrases of the same Psalm:
‘always ready to help in times of trouble.’ &
‘the Lord of Heaven’s Armies is here among us’
Think about help for a moment. Help is something you tend to need here and now. But while a fort is limited to a location, armies go out and are mobile. The Psalmist couples the attributes of a fort with an army, but not just an army – the Lord of Heaven’s Armies himself. God is both a fortress, and an Army among us!
How do we process this declaration about God? The Psalmist records that God himself outlines the process for us and it is really, really easy:
“Be still, and know that I am God!”
Yet if being still and knowing is the process, why is it so hard?
Today, we find ourselves watching more YouTube and Netflix than ever and picking up the iPad to surf the internet or listen to a podcast. Is there any place in your schedule left for that time to be still?
So whatever happened to quiet? What happened to time for reflection?
It is good for us to stop, and think and reflect. It is important to build habits and space for reflection. And that space is what it means to be still and know that the Lord of Heaven’s Armies is among us.